Veep asks Hajj pilgrims to pay travelling fee on time
Koforidua, Aug 1, GNA - Vice President John Mahama at the weekend urged all Muslims who wish to take part in this year's Hajj to abide by the time frame of the payments of the hajj fee, to ensure a smooth organization.
According to the Vice President, government was determined to organize a better hajj this year and had started preparation towards the Hajj and would abide strictly by the payments date.
The Veep noted that even though last year's Hajj was considered successful, there were occasions that the late payments of some Muslims nearly marred the smoothness of the process, and that this year government would be strict on the time.
Mr Mahama said this in a speech read on his behalf by the deputy Eastern Regional Minister, Mr Babal Jamal at the 16th Ramadan National Conference of Muslims in Koforidua.
He stressed the need for unity and tolerance of each others views in the Muslim community, to reflect the doctrines and tenets of the religion as directed by the Prophet Mohammed.
Mr Mahama said over the years, the Muslim community had proved to be reliable allies in national development gaining them national recognition and urged them therefore to show more concern to unity and tolerance.
He called on the delegates who included regional chief Imams and other leaders of the Muslim community from across the country to lead the crusade against immoral acts such as internet fraud, drug peddling, defilement and others that permeates in all communities.
Mr Babal Jamal later on behalf of the Veep donated GHC 500 and two bags of rice to the conference.
The Conference, which was organized to deliberate on a common date for the start of the Ramadan by consensus, agreed that Tuesday August 10 shall be the first sighting day for the new moon of the month of Ramadan or Thursday August 12 shall be the automatic day for the commencement by all facets of the religion.
Sheikh Nuhu Sharabutu, the National Chief Imam, in a speech read on his behalf, urged all the facets of the Muslim tradition including the Alsunas, Tijanias and the Ahmadiyyas to observe the fast on the same day as the conference had adopted to show unity.
He called on the leaders of the Muslim community to put aside their selfish interests, which most of the time led them astray, and remain committed to their collective agreements as per the doctrine of the religion.
The Chief Imam condemned the attitude of some Muslims who refuse to accept the ruling of their leaders in their religious conflict and go to the law courts, describing it as unholy to the Prophet Mohamed.
Sheikh Sharubutu advised all Muslims to be each other's keeper and do away with the negative tendencies of finding faults with their neighbours as they approach the Ramadan for a fruitful fasting.
The Bishop of the Koforidua Catholic Diocese in a message to the conference said the need for tolerance to understand each others view was paramount in order to co-exist peaceful with all others.
He expressed the hope that the consensus reach by the conference would be abided by all the facets of the religion to show a sign of unity amongst them.